During the first half of the 2010s, I collaborated with Stephen Ross to articulate digital methods (including computational and multimodal approaches) with what Douglas Mao and Rebecca L. Walkowitz call the “new modernist studies” (see Bad Modernisms, for instance). Stephen and I ultimately wrote an essay on the topic, surveying a spectrum of frameworks and scholarly projects that not only blend literary and technical practice but also highlight the complex relationships between individual modernist works and the cultures in which they were embedded.

An abstract for that essay is below. It’s accompanied by links to Literature Compass, where the essay was published, and related research by the MLab sand Modernist Versions Project. Thanks to Stephen for writing with me, and to David Amigoni and Tommy Davis for their editorial work.


Image of book covers for hundreds of novels

Modernism Meets Digital Humanities
Published in Literature Compass 11.9 in September 2014 | written with Stephen Ross | nine pages | subscription required

Links: essay (HTML; PDF); MLab research (HTML) on modernism; site (HTML) for the Modernist Versions Project


This essay traces some of the ways modernism and digital humanities have converged of late. It covers some of the key modes in which that convergence has so far found expression: popular websites and mobile apps, issues of copyright, the production of digital scholarly editions, the practice of versioning, questions of scale, and geospatial techniques. We cite examples of productive convergences of modernist studies and digital humanities, and articulate the issues listed above with specific research and teaching projects. Our overview advances the basic argument that there are special affinities between modernism and digital humanities and that digital approaches afford some of the most promising lines of development for the ongoing expansion of the “new modernist studies.”


Featured image, edited in Photoshop, care of Alex Christie, Katie Tanigawa, Stephen Ross, and the MLab-MVP team’s z-axis research. Main image care of Jana Millar Usiskin, Google Images, the MVP, and the MLab. Both used with permission. This page was created on 14 August 2019 and last updated on 15 July 2021.